My name is Destini McCrory, and I am a rising senior at the University of Pennsylvania. As an undergrad student, my major is Africana studies and my research interests include the intersections between queerness and African diasporic religion (specifically hoodoo and conjuring), especially as it pertains to leisure, pleasure, healing, resistance, and embodiment. After obtaining my bachelor’s degree, I plan to pursue a graduate PhD program in African studies and religion.
As a Mellon Mays undergraduate fellow, my goals of extensive research are supported by the archives provided by programs such as the Library Company internship. As a fellow, I felt both propelled by the sheet talent of those around me and supported through the professional development programs facilitated throughout the week.
In my week, I met amazing peers and professionals and discovered the different research projects that they have from Black foodways to the impact of slavery on Black birthing people and their medical history. Additionally, I have found different pictures and pamphlets on different African spiritual practices and medicinal healing methods used in the 18th and 19th century. I am interested in how those who came before me can inform and influence my own healing as a Black queer person in North America.